tv Newsmakers CSPAN June 22, 2014 6:00pm-7:01pm EDT
trying to get that resolved. that is a major contributing your to the deteriorating situation. >> there will still be military personnel in harm's way. how did the democrats sell that to the american people that we are sending american people back to iraq, a war we said we're going to get out of? >> we have troops are protecting and the american embassy, and so the additional troops to enhance the protection was important.
it is a measured response, we have to make sure that we are protecting our national security interest. we do not want the situation to deteriorate even further because that would compromise our interest even more. democrats and the american all understand that there is a certain amount that we have to make sure that we do particularly because we unfortunately in the previous administration got fully engaged in iraq and went to war in a country under false pretenses. we have, i think of a certain responsibility to address the situation there, particularly as the situation gets worse and
potentially threatens our interest. >> through the president bring the congress along with him on this? does he need to get additional the authority -- additional authority to get airstrikes and military strategy? >> the authorization the president has in place from the original war resolutions all the authorization he needs. the president said yesterday he would consult with the congress. i do not think it would be necessary, he already has that authorization. greg zero the business of helping -- >> you are in the business of helping democrats get reelect did. what this was due to the democratic race going into the fall election?
>> i think the main focus of the majority of americans is still the economy. we should be focused on creating jobs, getting the economy turned around, grinning more opportunities for people to climb ladders to the middle-class. republicans are focused on everything but creating jobs, distracting american voters from the fact that they do not have an agenda that jives with what americans want to focus on. that is why they are focused on benghazi and every other unrelated item to the economy. they continued to be upset with the affordable care act but they were willing to shut down the government over it. it is such a huge contrast
between the direction the democrats want to continue to take this country, such as the poll yesterday that show americans want democrats to control congress because they know that we have our priorities in order. we have their back, and what they see from republicans is extremism. when eric can't or his own party's nomination at the head of the party, you know how far the extremism has come. >> i see no map anywhere to suggest that republicans will not be in house seats. republicans are going to do better in the next verse in the house than they are this term. >> no they are not. where will we lose to them? the republicans are fully
engulfed, and have been swallowed by the tea party. in race after race, the contrast between the democratic company and the republican nominee is going to be extremely stark. the republicans embrace revealing the affordable care act, trying to cause to seniors more with their prescription drugs by reopening the doughnut holes.
when you have a republican candidate versus a democratic end of it standing in front of the voters, in race after race, and the folly will be the democratic candidates that win because we are focused on creating more opportunities, investing education, more opportunities for young people to go to college because that is the path to making sure that you can have a life that you envision for yourself and your family. on the political side of things, we have the dnc efforts and so many efforts in which we ever greeted candidates -- we have recruited candidates to run against republicans who have embraced that extremism. >> do these things and a major voters? the president's approval ratings are 41%, was that nbc poll found. how did democrats know out in full force in a midterm
election? it is a different electorate than a presidential campaign. >> this is not a referendum on the president. what happens in a midterm, this race is going to be about local issues. it is going to be about issues that are important to each congressional district. the question for voters will be does the candidate that wants me to vote for them have their finger on the pulse of what i care about? the polls that the republicans have their finger on his right wing tea party extremism that wants to deny women access to health care that they have the right to, that wants to cap education, cut support for people who need to feed their families. who refuse to adopt immigration reform and how are they going to win hispanic voters with the positions they have?
they refuse to increase when the wage -- minimum wage. they are so dramatically out of touch, and that is the contrast that we are going to have in race after race across the country. i think democrats are well positioned to pick up seats in the house of representatives, and i think we will hold the senate because of the contrast. >> what do you think of the new republican leadership in the house? we had a vote this week, the new majority leader. does kevin mccarthy of california change the dynamic at all on that side of the aisle? could you perhaps work with him better than mr. cantor? >> i had a decent working relationship with mr. cantor, and i suspect i would have won with mr. mccarthy, but there is no difference. on the contrary, unfortunately i
wish that we could turn a corner and that republicans would decide that a want to embrace common ground and focus on working together, but they are entire leadership team old and new still think that the most important priorities are to repeal the affordable care act, and to roll back the access to health care that has been the law since 2010. this is still a leadership team that should -- does not believe we should do conference of immigration reform or raise the minimum wage. even the kevin mccarthy has had some positive example of immigration reform, this is a leadership team that has the same thing. >> any bill that we should expect to pass before november that they could really work together?
>> the problem, and the dynamic elliptically -- politically, is that they will have another election after november. the tea party extremism have the big lead this is not over. they have been engaged in a civil war for a long time, and the tea party has won that war. all the republicans have been forced so far to the right that there is no more mainstream in the republican party. that is the case on full display in the republican conference with the republican leadership. unfortunately, if the current republican leadership wanted to try to come to the middle of work with democrats, they would be hard-pressed to do that because they will have tea party components in their conference. >> do you think that is the case with the highway funding bill?
>> i see no indication from the republican leadership or confidence that -- they have a lot of opposition in their conference in dealing with that highway bill. despite the fact that the highway fund is about to run dry. they refuse to support investing in infrastructure. why have we not brought that bill up for a vote? it is due, it is time. it takes time to work together on that. even as the leader of my national party, even i understand we have to wjui together. we have to set aside some of our strongly held views. you do not compromise your principles. but you come together, and each side leaves their struggle he had abused to the side seat can move forward together -- strongly held views to the side
so they can move forward together. unfortunately their members have proven time and again that they care more about holding onto power been doing the right ring. >> you are from south florida, if we have reached a point where immigration is not going to get through on the legislative front, do you need the president to work unilaterally and accomplish the things by executive order? >> i think the president has rightly shown a propensity to do that. he has clearly said he has a pen and a phone, and he is not going to sit idly by, nor should he. if cong)ess refuses to take on some of our biggest challenges because the status quo is
unacceptable on rick immigration reform -- on immigraton reform. we have people who have lived here their whole lives, they do not know anything else, any other country. 11 million people is a huge amount. if we do not address that they have to earn that legal status, and we just ignore it, it is plainly callous and insensitive. on the political side, it shows how out of touch the republicans are. a year ago my counterpart talked about the autopsy that they had done on their party and that they needed to reach out to certain groups that they have daily mail it. -- that they had alienated. they doubled down. instead of getting better, they
have gotten worse. i do not see how they have any appeal to the hispanic voters, the women voters, to the lgbt community, to young people, these of the people who want to cut education, who did not want to make college affordable because they want to cut student aid. they are going in reverse and forward -- reverse, not forward. >> is there a democrat other than hillary clinton who could be the standardbearer? >> of course there is. we have a vice president of the united states, who could be a standardbearer. i am the chair of the dnc, so i have to manage our primary process with whoever is in it. we have a deep bench of
is secretary clinton, vice president biden, or a'yone of the number of candidates, the governor of maryland, or massachusetts, or new york, or virginia. the list goes on. >> you were one of the early supporters coming you endorsed her in 2007. do you think there is a need to coalesce around her as a party, or is a contested democratic primary good for the party? >> honestly i think we will have a robust presidential campaign like we always do in this country. i will paraphrase my counterpart who himself said that they are going to be hardk(ressed to win another national election
right with a group they have alienated, who are the swing vote. what we need to do is continue to focus on the priorities of the american people. make sure through tax policy, economic always think of education policy, environmental policy, health care policy, that people can have more opportunities to create a better way of life for themselves. that is contrasted with republicans who seem obsessed with tea party extremist issues that are not something that almost any of us actually hear from our constituents about would we go home. ask you said you needed to manage the primary calendar for the party. when do democratic candidates need to be in an order for you to manage it effectively and have the party the most competitive it can be?
>> we are well on track to have the amount of time appropriate. we are well-prepared, we're getting in the strongest possible shape to run a robust campaign. our selection process is ongoing. six incredible cities have for submitted requests for proposals. i am looking forward to going through that process. it has been an exciting year and a half in 2012 election paid off our debt. we are now in the black and the dnc and have been building on our programs. i've been trying to manage responsibly paying our debt down and building a program so we can do that.
>> what is your thinking about how you pick the city? is it by fund raising or by organizing? >> there is a variety of things we looked at. i was not a part of the selection process, i was chair after my predecessor picked the site. we have a whole host of considerations, and we send those out to the city's them to put together a plan. we will review the proposal. it is the organization and the depth of support and the community. it is the hotels on the capacity they have, the ease of travel in the city. there are so many considerations. >> will it be earlier in 2016? republicans are making their calendars a little bit shorter,
are democrats doing the same? >> we are the had it a little bit shorter -- already had a bit shorter, to engage the grassroots community and make sure that there was a regional outreach to the folks in north carolina, south carolina, and virginia. it allowed us to sign up more volunteers and put more out there in the swing states. we are not at the point where the committee is reviewing the calendar, but we have lots of time. we expect to pick the host city by the end of this year or the beginning of 2015. >> republicans are also looking at limiting the number of debates.
with democrats like to do the same? >> instead of trying to hide our candidates from the voters, and not allow them choose the some of the rings that are candidate care about, republicans had a pretty awful experience with a lot of their extremist candidates saying things that got them into trouble. it is not surprising to me that they want voters restricted before the ballot. we will have robust debate seasons in which i expect our candidates will have an opportunity to to show up no matter who is our nominee they will be the president of the united is because they will focus on job creation, and making sure we can protect our environment so that our children grow up healthy.
and we can ensure the next generation of americans have an opportunity to just feed -- to succeed. >> you have vendor debt, is that right? >> we do. >> do you think that will be paid off the end of the year? has this had any tangible effect on your operations? >> no. what i have tried to do is to make sure, we took on debt, and major art can't part would trade with the city day of the week -- and made sure our counterpart would trade with us any day of the week. we launched the fourth generation of our digital a technological advantage, and use that technology to microstar
good howl and where to register voters. we are focused on expanding the vote them and the republicans have been focused on limiting voters abilities to cap the ballot because they know they cannot win elections on the merits, so they have to rig with the electorate looks like so it makes candidates in a better position to win. the midterms should be pretty good for them because fewer people vote. democrats celebrate more people voting, so that is what we focus on. we always carry some vendor debt, we will carry about the normal amount of debt that we usually do. i would never want to be in the situation where i paid off all
of our debts until not build the program out to know so we could make sure we could back up our candidates. we will be in a very strong position, we are working with many companies to provide that we own the data that would campaign with now. would push it up and down the ballot, so that they can benefit rum that data -- from that data. we are light-years ahead of them, so we're going to continue, since we have a print our grassroots cultural network, coupled with our technological and digital advances, to allow us to exponentially reach more voters. >> do you have a commitment from hillery?
>> she is focused on resting and now that she has got her book tour launched, she is in the midst of that. i am confident that she will be helping democrats across the country getting elected. >> and i end on a personal note. do your roommates like your clean cooking and your black bean chocolate cake? >> since we used to only have popcorn and maybe some coke in the refrigerator, and now i food shop every week and focus on eating and cooking healthy, the problem is i stay up a lot later because i'm cooking at 11:00
p.m. at night because that is what i can fit it in. i leave some stuff in the refrigerator for them so they can give it a try, and so far they really like it. >> we will have to leave it there. thank you. we are back with our reporters can and paul. paul, you asked about how it was looking for 2014 and democrats to possibly take back the house. what do the numbers say? we heard a very competent dnc chair say that the democrats could win this. >> i have not seen anyone suggesting that democrats will be able to take back the house. i think they will lose another half-dozen seats in the house. the on thing is with redistrict thing and -- redistricting, there is very few seats where there is wiggle room.
i see very few opportunities for them to make again, and she did not the more it -- make gains, but she did not seem worried. take are in the margin of error. each state and each race will be critical. there is a jeopardy for the democrats in the senate, but debbie seemed very confident they going to win. >> i think it is a question of momentum. where will they get momentum in the next few months?
she made much of the passage of legislation in congress, but there is not a lot that democrats can run on egg big raise here -- on big victories here. >> you have the big headlines and news about the situation in iraq. >> it does not help them. her justification is we are cleaning up the mess that we are responsible for because of the last administration. we made this point, how do you get a democratic voter onto the polls by saying we're going to send people back to iraq because we are cleaning up other people's mess? >> this will be a tangible issue in october as well. we do not know what additional that the president may take in iraq. this is something that the democratic vote has been opposed to for years.
if we're further tangled in iraq, it is hard to see how that hopes democrats in the fall. >> one of the questions is going to be a concern about the growth of government and government power in general. and think the obama administration in the past 18 months has stepped into a number of woodchuck holes that have a them look not particularly competent and graceful, and not concerned about congressional power. the republicans made a good effort at saying he is becoming an imperial person, you doing stuff on his own, which of course, he cannot get congress to pass anything, so he has to do things on his own. in his a back-and-forth issue. the back-and-forth on this really does help republicans. >> the economy has seemingly
improved, but it has gone through fits and starts in the past two months. we could see it slow a bit if it is not getting better and's lives. that could help democrats. >> there is more time to talk about 2016 later on. thank you for being with us. >> an f on transparency and freedom of information. i think my colleagues in journalism would give a similar grade, whether they are liberal or conservative. the freedom of information processes become a joke. it was well on its way prior to the obama administration, but this administration has perfected the stall, the delay, the reaction, the excuse. i think the information they
he was the keynote speaker at this year's iowa democratic convention in des moines. >> please join me in welcoming the governor of the great state of maryland, martin o'malley. >> thank you. thank you. [applause] thank you, iowa. thank you very, very much. i want to begin by thanking you for your indulgence and watching that little introductory video and my apologies to those who thought were you settling in for
the next episode of "the wire." [laughter] it's wonderful to be here in des moines, to be with so many grea friends in iowa. i turn to your neighbor and tell them iowa is moving forward. go ahead. do it. turn to your other neighbor and tell them we need a fresh start. you guys have one of the most outstanding democratic parties in the united states of america. and thank you, scott brennan, for your great work. [applause] scott does an outstanding job as your chair. and scott, i want to thank you for your leadership. i think that you understand better than most that in order for any of us as public servants to govern well, we need the democratic party getting stronger every day. and that's what you're doing in iowa. [applause] to create jobs, to strengthen
our middle class, to give our children a better future. with scott's leadership and the hard work of all of you in this room, we are going to give iowa a fresh start by electing jack hatch the next governor of iowa. [applause] jack, i'm looking forward to campaigning with you today. you represent that sort of problem solving. you and monica. that sort of problem solving leadership that every state needs. we need a governor who's on the side of the middle class families of iowa. their needs and their aspirations. i think the people of iowa have had enough of the branstad administrations. don't you? [applause] my goodness. five terms is enough, don't we think? it's time for a fresh start. and it's time to turn the page on cronyism. and elect a governor who's going to put the needs of
iowa's middle class families first every single day he goes to work. and jack hatch is that leader. jack hatch and monica vernon are going to move your state forward. but they're going to need partners. so let's make sure that mark smith is the next speaker of the house of iowa. let's help senators gronstal and yokum keep the senate with democratic leadership moving forward. and we're going to re-elect dave lobsect to congress, aren't we? [applause] and we are going to send the congress patrick murphy, aren't we? and whoever the republicans figure out they want to put up, we are going to elect stacy apple to congress, aren't we?
and break that glass ceiling? and we're going to beat steve king and elect fighting jim mauer the next congressman from iowa's fourth. now i'm sure also on your mind, especially given the outstanding service that came to our country from your united states senator tom harkin that you have an important u.s. senate race here, don't you, this year? yes, indeed you do. and there couldn't be a bigger contrast than the choices of the people of iowa are going to be presented. in bruce brailley and joni ernst. bruce brailley's cause is the cause of a stronger middle class in iowa. greater opportunity. an iowa where everyone's included. and where everyone is needed
and where we help each other in order to move forward. now, joni earns of the -- ernst wants to privatize social security. she wants to turn the medicare into a voucher system. she wants to repeal the federal minimum wage. now, how is any of that going to help strengthen middle class opportunity and middle class families in iowa? she even wants to roll back the clean water act and eliminate the department of education. how much less schooling do you think would be good for power kids, joni? can you imagine someone with those sorts of extreme views holding the seat that tom harkin so ably filled on your behalf all of these years? look, from education to agriculture, to his unflagging commitment to the sick, to the
poor, to the voiceless, senator hearken's success can be measured by the millions of american lives that he has touched and that he has made better. and iowa and indeed the entire country will be forever blessed because of tom harkin's great service. [applause] and i know tom and ruth would join me when i say -- you want to know what sort of lasting tribute you can give to tom harkin? you want to know what sort of tribute you can give to him and to ruth after the thank you parties and the thank you dinners are done? the best tribute you can give to tom harkin's work is to elect bruce braley your next united states senator. cheers and applause]
it's all about the beliefs we share, isn't it? about our belief in the dignity of every individual. about our own responsibility to advance the common good. and that's what i want to talk with you about today. i want to talk with you about the story of us. the ongoing story of us. the story of baltimore and iowa, the story of maryland, and america. when i was elected mayor of baltimore in 1999, my city had become by that year the most violent, adetected and abandoned city in america. and there was a big difference in those days between the baltimore that we carried in four hearts and the baltimore that we saw on our streets and
the baltimore that we saw on our headlines. and our biggest enemy wasn't drug dealers or crack cocaine. it was in essence a lack of belief. a culture of failure. countless excuses about how nothing would work. and why none of us should even bother to try. and so we set out to make our city work again. we saw trash in our streets and alleys. so we picked it up. every day. we saw open air drug markets, and we began to relentlessly close them down. we saw neighbors suffering from addiction so we expanded drug treatment, and we got more of our neighbors into recovery. -- after a year [applause] nd after a year of hard-earned, steady progress we turned a bright light on the heart of the despair that had
gripped our city for too long. and we launched a campaign on television that we called simply "believe." the first step was a four-minute commercial which the local news affiliates agreed to air simultaneously. and as a viewer you walk through a day in the life of a 10-year-old african-american boy. it starts out with him warming his hands at a corner fire with a homeless man on an abandoned corner. dodging drug dealers and their suburban buyers, stepping around hypodermic needles and prostitutes. ultimately seeking out his little sister in the night who had gone to the store to buy candy. and he finds her in the center of a crowd of grief-stricken neighbors, paramedics and police, another young victim of drug dealer crossfire. killed in a drive-by shooting. her tightly braided hair, her
lifeless eyes, wide open, lying in a pool of blood. the narrator's voice says the people of baltimore are in a fight. it's a fight for their future. it's a fight that we've been losing one life at a time. he continues. there are some who say it's over. give up. we've lost. but for the strong, for the brave, this fight is not over. what will it take to make us stand together and say enough? and then come the stark white on black words, believe. believe in us. believe in yourself. baltimore, believe. now, for flee very uncomfortable and painful weeks, we ran those ads. and we had to be honest about our present in order to change
our future. we then ran ads calling upon our people to take real individual actions. to step up, mentor a child and an hour, a week can save a live. call 1-800-believe. join the police department. believe in yourself. believe in us. call 1-800-believe. get someone you love into drug treatment. it works and there's more of it. call 1-800-believe. and you know what? it did work. the people of baltimore rallied. and of course it wasn't about the bumper stickers or the signs, was it? it was about something deeper. the belief that there is no such thing as a spare american. over the next 10 years, baltimore went on to achieve the biggest reduction in part one crime of any major city in america. now, why do i share that story with you today? because we must acknowledge where we are together in order to move forward together.
because belief is important. belief drives action. and today, like baltimore in 1999, we as americans are going through a cynical time of disbelief, aren't we? a time with more excuses than action. more ideology than cooperation. more fear and anger oftentimes than progress. we seem to have lost, haven't we, that shared conviction we once had that we actually have the ability to make things better together. and there is today in our country a big difference between the america that we carry in our hearts and the america that we're seeing in our headlines. the america in our hearts is that land where those who work hard, who play by the rules, who get up early in the morning, can make a better future for their kids and their family. and the america in our headline sincere too often a place where wall street profits are higher than ever, the rich are richer
than ever, but the paychecks of hard-working families are becoming smaller and smaller. -- merica in our hearts [applause] the america in our hearts remains that nation that created the greatest middle class in the history of the world. but the headlines of the nation where too many kids can't afford to go to college and too many college graduates can't find a job. and all of this, my friends, reminds me of the story of the prize fighter who has been in the ring and he's beaten against the ropes. he's getting the worst of it. pounded down by his opponent time and time again. and finally his trainer gets a chance to sit him down in the corner. and he says to him as he looks him in the eye, the problem isn't with the other guy doing to you, the problem is what you're not doing for yourself. whether we think we can or we think we can't, we are probably
right. and i don't know about you. but i've had enough of the cynicism, and i've had enough of the apathy, i've had enough of us giving into self-pity, small solutions, and low expectations of one another. [applause] so let's remember who we are, shall we? for 235 years, we have been the country that thrilled the world. that led the world. over and over again in large part by making ourselves stronger at home. don't you think it's time we do t again? the patriots who made america great, they didn't pray for their president to fail. they prayed for their president o succeed.
[applause] and our founders didn't belittle science. they didn't belittle learning. they aspired to it. they didn't appeal to america's fears. they inspired american courage. and they would never, ever abandon the war on poverty in order to declare a war on women, a war on workers, a war on immigrants a. war on the sick, or a war on hungry children. [applause] what was true for our parents and grandparents remains true today. america is the greatest job generating, opportunity-expanding nation ever created in the history of the free world. but america cannot serve our children's needs, cannot serve our children's future well if our republican brothers and sisters in congress keep
shutting us down and selling our country short. as democrats, as americans, we have an urgent responsibility today. it's about jobs, it's about a stronger middle class, and it's about giving our children a better future now. the truth is after hoover, america needed roosevelt. after eisenhower we needed kennedy. after reagan we needed clinton. and after eight miserable years of george w. bush, america needed barack obama. [applause] no president, no president since f.d.r. inherited a worse economy, bigger jobs losses, as many wars or as large of deficit as president obama did. thanks to his leadership,
thanks to the leadership of tom harkin and congressional democrats, america's moving forward again. get this. this month, was our 51st month in case anybody still keeping count of positive monthly job creation in the united states f america. in fact, it was the fourth month in a row, i think, that we actually had more than 200,000 jobs created. there were 217,000 jobs created last month. but urgent work remains to be done. and the cynical if you who have hacked our democracy are digging in. yes, these tea party republicans funded by their wealthy economic royalist friends like the koch brothers, they see america as a small, small place, don't they? they see us as a business in decline. they look at america as a place
of limited potential. and limited capacity. a place that can -- a place that can only afford to serve the interests of the privileged few. and we've seen this view before, haven't we? hoover called it supply side economics. reagan called it trickle down economics. george w. bush called it focusing on my base. [applause] now, whatever they call it, it will not give our children a better future. a more prosperous future with more jobs and more opportunity for all. to those who would prescribe this future of less for america's middle class, we must ask the very real question, how much less do you think would be good for our country? think about it. how much less education will
make our children smarter? how many fewer college degrees will make our economy more competitive? how many hungry american children can we no longer afford to feed? think about your parents and grandparents for a second. picture their faces. they understood the essential truth of our american dream. the stronger we make our country, the more she gives back to us. to our children. and to our grandchildren. we will not solve our problems by doing less. we must do more. in maryland, we have chosen to do more. we have answered our president's call to create new jobs and new industries. to build a modern economy. an economy with a human purpose. we've done more rather than less to improve our children's education. more rather than less to rebuild our infrastructure and
create jobs. more to make college opportunity more widely available to more families. you see like you, we believe that the foundation of any growing economy is a stronger middle class. therefore, we increased the earned income tax credit. not once but twice. we became the first state in the nation to pass a living wage. and just a few weeks aeg, thank you, tom harkin, for your leadership, we increased the minimum wage in maryland to 10.10 an hour. [applause] now why did we choose to do these things? why did we choose to do these things? because when workers earn more money, businesses have more customers, and our whole economy grows. this is called common sense economics. a thriving economy, a thriving economy, a growing economy is
built from the middle out and the middle up. prosperity doesn't trickle down. and it never has. a stronger middle class is not the consequence of economic growth. a stronger middle class is the ause of all economic growth. [applause] and the proof is in the results. the proof is in the results. maryland's creating jobs at the second fastest rate of any state in our region. about 9,000 over just the last two months. not only do our people now earn the highest median income in the nation, but we're also rated one of the top states for upward economic mobility. and just last week, the united states' chamber of commerce hardly a mouthpiece for the maryland democratic party, for the third year in a row, named us the number one state in america for innovation and
ntrepreneurship. but progress is also about creating a more just and a more inclusive and a more secure future for power kids, isn't it? with the belief in the dignity of every individual, we expanded and protected collective bargaining rights in aryland. and we don't belittle our teachers. we support them. we partner with them. and with the belief in the ignity of every child's full potential we passed the dream act in maryland. and we enjoyed passing it so much that when a republican brothers and sisters sent it to referendum the people of our state passed it again. ith 58% of the vote.
and together, with the belief in the dignity of every individual, we passed marriage equality in the state of maryland. [applause] together, we've driven crime down to 30-year lows in maryland. and we passed important gun safety legislation that focuses on school safety, mental health, and background checks for handgun purchases. and because climate change is real, we expanded renewable energy, accelerated energy conservation, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions. progress is a choice. we do not move forward by chance. hope drives belief. belief drives action. and action achieves results.
final story. final story. i am joined here in your great state by my 16-year-old son, william o'malley. and when william was 9 years old, and my wife and i have four children, two boys, two girls, rich people couldn't do better -- laft last -- [laughter] when william was 9 years old, when william was 9 years old, i was at home and together we were watching a history channel special about rosa parks. sism rights. and the montgomery busboy caught. and as william watched the story he turned to me and said hey, dad, back then, by which he meant sometime between the extinction of the dinosaur and the arrival of the eight-track pe, he said, dad, back then, somebody actually told you that some of you had to ride in the
front of the bus and some of you had to ride in the back of the bus? and you guys actually listened? [laughter] and i said, well, william, i know it's hard to imagine, son. but that's just the way it had always been. and then he turned to me, with that clear wisdom of youth, and he said dad, didn't you guys realize that you were all going to the same place? [applause] oh, yes. the truth is we are all going to the same place. we are all on the same bus. iowa and maryland, california
and mississippi, and we will move forward or we will slip back together. we will succeed or we will fail together. and we will rise or fall together. and this is not a matter my friends of wishing or hoping. it's a matter of belief. it's a matter of action. we are americans. and we make our own destiny. and we will not be the first generation to give our children a country of less. and it means that iowa must stand up. it means that maryland must stand up. it means that each of us must stand up. and it only takes one person, and then another, and then another, to stand up and say enough. enough obstruction. enough wasted time. stop selling our country short. let us achieve like americans again. let us lead like americans again. and let us believe in americans again. in ourselves, in our nation, an